Has anyone out there just gone full-time freelance? I'm looking to connect and build a small network of people who are trying their luck at full-time freelance or are in the process of starting their own design studio. Going through the process myself and doing it alone is pretty overwhelming, I thought teaming up with a small group to bounce ideas off and talk strategies might be beneficial to all involved.
When you say "teaming up", do you mean in a business sense or just to chat? If the later, there's a couple of freelance groups on meetup. Or you could try some of the co-working places like Inspire 9 in richmond. I'm sure there are others like that.
You got some nice work especially that "Amigo in town" script.
I've been working as a freelancer for a while now and it's a bit of a learning curve but it beats working for the man. IMO.
I'm also re-branding myself so in a way I feel like I'm starting all over again.
One of the worst things for me has been what to name myself and brainstorming with my two dogs hasn't proved to be very effective.
Been thinking about going either full-time freelance or setting up my own business as I constantly have side projects to look after on top of my full-time work. It gets very tiring to do both! Happy to network and see how we can support each other out.
Oh and I'm a Melbourne based Digital Designer / Art Director.
For one thing, with full-time freelancing you have to put in a lot more hours to make the same kind of money. That can be disheartening at the start.
BUT it depends what you value. If you value freedom and flexibility over cash, then you will do well. If you just focus on making lots of money you'll be pulling your hair out for a while.
It's definitely possible to do both, if that's what you want. But you will have to get to a point where you have enough regular work that you can outsource a bit or hire other people. Then you can start taking on bigger jobs and attracting bigger clients, but do less of the work yourself. That's when you can make the bigger bucks.
The one thing I've learned in the 4+ years I've been solo is that it's all about finding the one or two clients that will sustain your business. Then you can focus on finding other work that just tops it up. As long as the regulars keep coming, you'll be sweet.
Finding good 'regulars' is the hard part and usually comes from a bit of luck, combined with being in the right place at the right time. So my advice to start with would be to get yourself out there, and make sure everyone in your network knows what you're up to.
Unfortunately it's not as easy as letting your work and professionalism speak for itself. You have to put yourself in a business frame of mind and try to sell yourself well and be present. This doesn't come easy to many creatives, and is something I still struggle with a lot.
Finally, being around like-minded people is very helpful. It provides more momentum on hard days where you wake up thinking 'what am I doing?'. I can't recommend co-working spaces enough, but they are pricey in Melbourne so might need to wait a while before making the move.
Good luck, let me know if you ever want to grab a coffee to chat more. :)